Home >> November 2008 Edition >> ASSET ANALYSIS - The MILSATCOM JTEO
The MILSATCOM Joint Terminal Engineering Office (JTEO) conducts end-to-end terminal interoperability assessments of military satellite communication systems in support of the Military Satellite Communications Systems Wing (MCSW).

The JTEO was established in 1982 as the Milstar Joint Terminal Program Office (JTPO) working Milstar terminal interoperability issues. In 1997, JTEO was reorganized with an expanded MILSATCOM role covering the full spectrum of protected, wideband, and narrowband frequencies.

A multidisciplinary team of government/industry engineers, JTEO’s tenured technical capability works through the MILSATCOM community’s technical and program forums to accomplish resolution of critical Joint terminal issues across the MILSATCOM spectrum. JTEO’s primary role is to ensure MILSATCOM terminal end-to-end interoperability and integration into the Global Information Grid (GIG). To accomplish this, JTEO works with the terminal development community to develop interoperable terminal requirement specifications. These technical documents provide guidance to the Joint terminal community to ensure interoperability at all levels of development throughout the terminal life-cycle.

JTEO supports the test and evaluation of MILSATCOM systems through interoperability requirements verification, terminal and system test planning and execution, data analysis, discrepancy resolution, test reporting and certification recommendations. JTEO’s test and evaluation activities form the basis for Joint Interoperability Test Command’s interoperability certification of Milstar, AEHF, DSCS, WGS and TSAT terminals.

In response to ASD NII policy direction, JTEO develops the bi-annual National Security SATCOM Systems Synchronization Roadmap (NS4R). This analysis is used by acquisition decision makers to better synchronize Space, Control and Terminal segment developments to assure warfighters get needed capability on time. As required, JTEO uses results of NS4R analysis to aid development of Transformational Communications Architecture updates, National Security Space Program Assessments (NSSPA), and OSD PDM directed or other special programmatic studies that require authoritative input regarding MILSATCOM joint terminal segments.

JTEO’s Network Engineering capabilities provide interoperable end-to-end solutions to facilitate MILSATCOM system integration into terrestrial architectures and rest of the GIG. The JTEO develops and refines network protocols and terminal specifications to optimize MILSATCOM networks and develops solutions for next generation MILSATCOM network architectures. The JTEO plays a prominent role in defining the terminal to network interfaces for TSAT and AEHF. In addition, JTEO represents the MILSATCOM terminal perspective in GIG development forums, working to ensure interoperability among elements in the GIG.

JTEO program execution requires detailed coordination with OSD (NII, PA&E), respective Services Terminal Program Offices (TPOs) to foster terminal development collaboration; the Joint Staff, Services Staffs and National Security Agency (NSA); the National Security Space Office (NSSO) Communications Functional Integration Office (COMM FIO); Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA); Air Force Space Command, Army Strategic Command, and Combatant Commanders to resolve terminal issues for the MILSATCOM community.

JTEO chairs the MILSATCOM Terminal Collaboration IPT under the Joint SATCOM Acquisition Council (JSAC). In this role, it leads the Service TPOs in collaboratively developing future terminal modules, and addressing ASD NII’s guidance for incorporation of the Software Communications Architecture (SCA) into MILSATCOM terminal developments.

Military Satellite Communications Systems Wing
Previously known as the MILSATCOM Joint Program Office (MJPO), the Space & Missile Systems Center established the MILSATCOM Systems Wing on 1 August 2006. The team is made up of Joint Service Military, Government Civilians, The Aerospace Corporation, MITRE, Lincoln Labs, Systems Engineering and Technical Assistance (SETA), National Security Agency (NSA), our industrial partners and the contract work force that support us.

MCSW has five Groups and one squadron which deliver three primary Satellite Communications (SATCOM) product lines:

The Protected Communications Group provides the DoD survivable, global, secure, protected, jam-resistant communications for high priority military ground, sea, and air assets. The group provides operations and sustainment support to on-orbit Milstar constellation. In addition, the group executes the US$6.7B Advanced Extremely High Frequency (AEHF) and US$1.2B Enhanced Polar SATCOM (EPS) programs. The user equipment or terminals for the DoD protected communication systems in the currently operational Milstar Command Post Terminal (CPT) and US$3.2B Family of Advanced Beyond-Line-of-Sight Terminals (FAB-T) development program.

The Wideband Communication Group provides worldwide, high-volume, voice and data communications to the warfighter. The group provides operations and sustainment support for the on-orbit Defense Satellite Communications System (DSCS) constellation. In addition, the group executes the US$1.9B Wideband Global SATCOM (WGS) system and US$0.9B Global Broadcast Service (GBS). Wideband communication terminals include the Ground Multi-band Terminal (GMT), the High Data Rate - Radio Frequency (HDR-RF) ground terminal program which is an evolutionary upgrade to the GMT, and the FAB-T Increment 2.

The Transformational Satellite Communications System (TSAT) is the DoD’s future MILSATCOM System. The US$24.0B TSAT system will provide real-time connectivity of all Global Information Grid (GIG) assets; provide Battle Command-On-The-Move capability for Small Mobile Units; worldwide persistent connectivity of high/low resolution Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance; and survivable communications for Strategic Forces. The TSAT program office consists of the TSAT Network Integration Group, the TSAT Space Group and the TSAT Mission Operations Group.

Satellite command and control system development for all MILSATCOM systems is the responsibility of the MILSATCOM C2 Squadron. The squadron directs the Command and Control System-Consolidated (CCS-C) program, the command and control system of record for Milstar, DSCS, and WGS satellites currently on-orbit. Ultimately, CCS-C will control more than 26 military communications satellites across four families, including DSCS; Milstar; WGS; and AEHF System, using state-of-the-art commercial telemetry, tracking and commanding (TT&C) technology.

The MCSW is headquartered at Los Angeles Air Force Base (AFB) with an Alexandria, Virginia, operating location. Air Force terminal programs are executed by the Electronic Systems Center at Hanscom AFB, Massachusetts. MILSATCOM terminals are sustained by the Space Logistics Group in Colorado Springs, Colorado.